MIL: A One-Way Tribute To Lagos

After more than 30 months of waiting, African superstar and one of Afrobeats exponent Wizkid has released his fifth body of work "Made in Lagos", a tribute to Lagos state, the commercial nerve of West Africa.

Made in Lagos was slated for a October 15,2020 release but it was shifted due to the protest over police brutality in the country, the project was thereafter released two days ago.

The project was eight minutes short of one hour in duration and boost the likes of Ella Mai, HER, Damian Marley, Projectxx, Tems, Tay Iwar, Terri, Skepta, and Burna Boy as collaborators.

MIA's first three tracks were banging, a good pointer to what to expect from the other tracks, his opener " Reckless" was a tale about his travail while being grateful, reflective, and lewd, reckless sequel into Ginger featuring Burna Boy who switched up his key at the outro, ending the duet with a quick eight lines, not even the call and response was enough for him. I zankued to this joint.

Longtime tapped from the ever-growing United Kingdom Grime industry with the boss "Skepta" dropping a verse over a beat which screamed Bad Energy, he shouted out to Nigerian A&R Bankuli who is renowned for wearing hoodie.

"White tee, black hoodie
You see thе source, big swag, bankuli'.

Do you get it?

Bankuli on Hoodie.

The Saxophone magic continued on Mighty Wine, the wine was a pun on Wyne, who noticed the key on 59s of the song, the song that comes to mind is Shakara Oloje by Fela, it continued towards the climax.

Damian Marley had a star-struck effect on Wizkid when they met in 2018, this leads to this Blessed which has an intro from a typical Lagos life, traffic, people hawking. Hustle. While we do this, we have to be grateful because we are blessed. The hybrid of Reggae and Afrobeats was squeaky-clean. Blessed would still have been a good song with just Junior Gong verse. Blessed is the continuation of Reckless. I like the minimal input of the backup singers.

Smile was the lead single of this project, a strategic move. A perfect tune for the people considering the current turmoil we are in. A family-centric video was shot for the song which exposed the fatherly nature of Wizkid. HER showed her versatility with her input on this Reggae ditty. Running inside of flame to be with my love, baba, why the lie nah, abeg oh.

Piece of Me featuring British Singer Ella Mai would be a perfect tune with shanty over a bottle of chardonnay in bed. This is a sex pop. Minimal beat, the guitar string did most of the magic.
Who wants a piece of me? Say Yes or Yes.

Stress me intro tapped from Ogaranya by Reminisce featuring Fireboy, the Piano riff, did Sax produced this too? Just like Smile, No stress exemplifies the positive mien of this album. It all about good energy.

True Love sampled Dis Love by DJ Spinall Ft Wizkid and Tiwa Savage(July 2019). Enough said, Wizkid still finds it difficult to stick to the topic, he switches, talking about love, next lines, about sex. Wrong titular. Sex Love would have been apt. Alte movement had a rep on this tune, Tay Iwar has been imprisoned with true love. Jamaica's Projexx ended the song with an allusion to sitting and long thing. Connect the dot.

While Essence featuring Neo-Soul Singer Tems was a reassurance tune, the promise of faithfulness, Sweet Love tilt towards coitus.

Roma is a contemporary hi-life tune. Dance and sex forming the central point of the song, "Ontop your love, I got kill person", Terri, say no to violence. Roma sounds like what Mastercraft would produce on a good day.

Gyrate and Grace ended the playlist, one lead to another, the latter was a continuation of the opening track.

Made in Lagos is a one-way tribute to Nigeria's former capital city. Wizkid has evolved but his lyrics haven't. It is still prosaic.

The production is spotless, the saxophone was put into good use, the same key, you need no one to tell you some person blew the sax on the whole album.

Wizkid is sadly comfortable in his comfort zone, a lot of the track sounded alike. One theme. Sex. Sex. Sex. This is not the album we waited for 30 months for, he could have come out with a more refined product.

A cursory listener would observe the deliberate collaborations, his 2017 album Sound From the Other Side was a Caribbean sound, on MIL, he sustained the tempo by coopting Damian Marley and Projectxx for the carribean market, UK had Ella Mai and Skepta, HER repped US, while Terri, Burna Boy, Tay Iwar and Tems were Nigeria representatives on this project.

Business wise, this is an album with a global appeal, with the recent Afrobeats explosion, Wizkid was smart in making the business move, the only albatross was the content. This is a sex pop album.

Is MIL an excellent album? No

Is it an average album? No

Titular: 4/10
Art Cover: 3/10
Sequencing:9/10
Lyrics: 3/10
Features: 8/10
Production: 9/10
Melody&Rhythm:8/10.

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A Music Journalist. Words: The Cable Newspaper, The Lagos Review, Afrocritik, Vanguard Newspaper, Legit News, Nigerian Tribune, Modern Ghana, and Others.

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Emmanuel Daraloye

Emmanuel Daraloye

A Music Journalist. Words: The Cable Newspaper, The Lagos Review, Afrocritik, Vanguard Newspaper, Legit News, Nigerian Tribune, Modern Ghana, and Others.

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